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Ayn Rand on Energy & Oil

 


Energy crises caused by unpredictability of government rules

The oil industry is being destroyed by a bombardment of paper--of governmental rules, regulations, directives, edicts, commands. But that bombardment is more effective than other kinds of air raids: it blasts your power stations, extinguishes your lights, freezes your homes, stops your motors, locks your factories, wipes out your jobs, and leaves a barren land on which nothing will grow again for generations.

The result of our present economic system is that the men who do the work-- in this case, the oil industry--know the state of their production at a given moment, but do not know what edict will shatter them next month or next year. The government officials do not know the state of the industry they are controlling-- nor what edict they will feel like issuing next week. The Arab oil embargo was not the cause of the energy crisis in this country: it was merely the straw that showed that the camel's back was broken.

Source: The Ayn Rand Letter, p.257-60, by Ayn Rand , Nov 5, 1973

Politics caused 1973 oil shortages, not Arab oil embargo

The Arab oil embargo was not the cause of the energy crisis in this country: it was merely the straw that showed that the camel's back was broken. There is no "natural" or geological crisis; there is an enormous political one. It is in the nature of a mixed economy that its policies are rationally inexplicable, that there are no identifiable causes, no accountable initiators, no ascertainable villains--and that you are losing your jobs, giving up your automobiles, catching pneumonia in unheated bedrooms, not because some giant evildoers are plotting your destruction, but because some seedy hack wanted an unearned salary, and some crummy professor wanted an undeserved prestige, and some measly shyster wanted a chance to fish in muddy laws, and none of them cared to or could watch the state of the country's economy, and the sum of such termite aspirations has eaten through the pillars of the structure so that one kick from a sheik was sufficient to make it crumble.
Source: The Ayn Rand Letter, p.257-60, by Ayn Rand , Nov 5, 1973

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Page last updated: Apr 26, 2015